Can Dogs Eat Grapes? Grape Toxicosis and Dangers Explained

correct answerThe Short Answer is:

Unfortunately dogs cannot eat grapes or raisins not even a little bit according to several studies. Dogs can suffer serious health problems after eating even a single grape with some resulting in death depending on their sensitivity to compounds in grapes.

In this research you will know the answer to the query “Can Dogs Eat Grapes? Grape Toxicosis and Dangers Explained“.

Grapes are a healthy snack for people despite having high natural sugar content. What about grapes for dogs and are grapes for dogs safe to eat? What are the health benefits of giving grapes to dogs and are there any side effects? Lets examine the grapes’ scientific background.

Grapes are not safe for dogs to eat even in small amounts. If you have been wondering “Can I give my dog grapes?” the answer is NO. Even though grapes and raisins are healthy for humans dogs may suffer severe illness or even die from eating grapes.

When a dog eats grapes or raisins kidney failure is the most common result.

It is a sad state of affairs because dogs love the taste of grapes and grapes are healthy for humans to eat. How can grapes poison dogs and why are they unfit for consumption? What could happen if you feed grapes to your dog? We’ll find out.

What are grapes?

The grape is a type of sweet fruit (technically a berry) that grows in the wild virtually everywhere and belongs to the genus Vitis. There are three main grape types today: North American French and European.

Various ways can be used for preparing grapes either fresh/raw or cooked. You can add grapes to salads make grape juice or wine with grapes or use them as a healthy snack for people.

Grapes are commonly found in green black and red colors.

This is what fresh raw grapes look like:

Among all fruits grapes have the highest natural sugar content which is why they are so sweet and delicious. In addition to their rich vitamin mineral and antioxidant content grapes are also a very good source of resveratrol epicatechin catechin and proanthocyanidins.

While dogs cannot consume grapes to reap these benefits lets explore all these potential benefits of grapes for dogs and people and why they should avoid them.

Can Dogs Eat Grapes?

Is it possible for dogs to eat grapes at all? Unfortunately dogs cannot eat grapes or raisins not even a little bit according to several studies.

Dogs can suffer serious health problems after eating even a single grape with some resulting in death depending on their sensitivity to compounds in grapes.

Grapes are not only fine to eat but are even recommended as a result of some of their health benefits. In particular antioxidants found in grapes improve human heart health and grape-based wine is often credited with this.

What are the potential benefits of grapes in general?

Although technically grapes are not healthy for dogs there are some ways that they could be if we could find a way to feed them grapes without the adverse effects. At the moment all we have are studies with other animals and people:

Proanthocyanidins: According to several studies antioxidants in grapes reduce oxidative damage and prevent heart disease in people.

Resveratrol: Antioxidants found in grape skin reduce the risk of heart disease inflammation and cancer and even have been shown to prolong life in test animals.

Anthocyanins: reduce inflammation in the body and reduce the risk of many diseases such as heart disease diabetes obesity cancer eye issues and Alzheimers.

In order to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes grapes (along with apples and blueberries) are the best fruits to consume.

Finally wine – one of the most famous beverages made from grapes – has tons of benefits. Several studies have shown that red wine reduces the risk of death from heart disease lowers blood pressure and reduces the risk of cancer dementia depression insulin resistance and the risk of diabetes and obesity.

There are many health benefits associated with grapes raisins and red wine but is there a way to feed grapes to dogs to reap these benefits? Science does not know very much about what causes grape toxicity in dogs so we do not know much about it.

Can dogs drink red wine?

Absolutely not. Wine contains not only the same toxins as grapes but it also contains ethanol (alcohol). You should never give your dog alcohol because their kidneys were not designed to process alcohol and it will cause serious problems.

Lets discuss the toxicity of grapes for dogs in general.

Which grapes in particular are toxic to dogs?

Dogs will be toxic to any fruit that falls within the definition of “grapes.”. Grapes of all kinds should never be given to your dog including:

  • Seeded grapes
  • Seedless grapes
  • Commercial or home-grown grapes
  • Organic or non-organic grapes
  • Red or green grapes
  • Raisins (dried grapes)
  • Products containing raisins or currants (trail mix granola bran cereal baked goods)
  • Fresh or processed grape pressings
  • Wine juice and other grape-based beverages

As you can see you cannot give grapes to dogs in any form whether it is dried grapes (raisins) or pressed grapes (juice). All of these foods and beverages contain grape compounds that are toxic for dogs.

But why are grapes toxic to dogs?

Just as with many other toxic foods for dogs we do not know why (1) grapes are toxic to dogs or what exactly causes illnesses and deaths in canines if they eat them. There are speculations however and I discuss those below.

Although the cause of the toxin is still a mystery to scientists the effects of grape consumption by dogs are well defined. Whenever a dog eats a grape it usually results in considerable pain discomfort illness and potentially death.

Are there any benefits of grapes for dogs at all?

It is unknown if grapes can benefit dogs in any way because in order to study grapes with dogs we would have to feed them grapes which may kill them or cause serious health problems.

Hence the claim at this time is that grapes have no benefit for dogs.

As a result any nutritional value grapes may have for your dog is nullified by the severity of the illness and damage this fruit can cause.

What is so toxic about grapes for dogs?

Researchers believe that grapes are toxic to dogs due to mycotoxins (also known as fungus) that grow on grapes and produce a substance that is toxic to dogs.

Scientists and veterinarians feel that grapes are toxic to dogs because of their salicylate content. Grapes are naturally rich in salicylate which causes a decrease in blood flow to the kidneys in dogs due to their sensitivity to it.

What is the toxic dose of grapes for dogs?

Grapes do not have specific toxic dosage for dogs because grapes affect each dog differently. There are some dogs that are far more sensitive to grape toxins than others and even one or two grapes can be disastrous for them.

Some dogs may be able to eat large amounts of grapes before showing signs of toxicity.

Either way its best for your dog to stay away from grapes and anything related to grapes.

It does not matter the age size or weight of your dog whether she will eat grapes or not. We must assume this because it is impossible to predict how severely a dog may react to grape poisoning.

4 Most Common Side Effects of Grapes on Dogs 

Now that we know you can not give your dog grapes lets talk about what you should do if grapes have adverse effects on your pet.

The majority of mild symptoms of grape poisoning in dogs do not appear until 6-24 hours after ingestion. Mycotoxin poisoning in dogs presents with severe symptoms approximately 24 to 48 hours after exposure.

When symptoms develop in your dog after 24 to 48 hours major damage has already been done to the body without you even being aware of it.

When your dog eats grapes watch out for these side effects:

1. Gastrointestinal distress in dogs

Dogs may experience abdominal pain and loss of appetite when exposed to the grape toxin. The canine body will try to expel the grape poison by vomiting and diarrhea.

2. Lethargy and dehydration in dogs

These side effects usually occur in conjunction with gastrointestinal distress. Grape toxins can cause extreme lethargy and frequent vomiting and diarrhea can cause your dog to become dehydrated both of which can be dangerous.

Dogs that are dehydrated tend to have lighter gums heavy panting and dry mouths and noses.

3. Tremors and weakness in the dog

Grape toxicosis affects a dogs body in many different ways resulting in tremors and shaking as well as an overall lack of mobility. 

4. Acute kidney (renal) failure

It is possible for your dog to experience anuria (a lack of urine) as a result of sudden kidney failure.

A dogs kidney failure is a medical emergency since once anuria occurs the animal is in danger of dying. Symptoms of kidney failure include uremic breath excessive thirst nausea diarrhea lack of appetite and abdominal pain.

What is the prognosis for a dog who has eaten grapes?

If a dog consumes grapes or raisins the prognosis depends on a number of factors: the amount he ate the degree of poisoning how soon veterinary treatment is started and whether kidney failure has developed.

Dogs that receive immediate treatment for grape consumption and potential toxicosis often have a favorable prognosis for recovery. If a dog is not treated by a veterinarian right away it might suffer kidney failure after which the prognosis is poor and the dog could die.

Grapes cause kidney failure in approximately 50% of dogs.

Can My Dog Eat Grapes?

The conclusion is that dogs cannot eat raisins grapes grape juice or any other product based on grapes especially red wine. Dogs cannot benefit from the consumption of grapes.

Grapes are not safe for dogs in any amount.

Scientists and veterinarians speculate that grape toxicity in dogs is caused by mycotoxins. However the exact cause of grape toxicity in dogs is unknown.

The different levels of sensitivity that dogs have toward grapes and the dangers they pose to your dogs health make it essential that you keep this fruit away at all times.

You must contact your veterinarian or pet poison control immediately if your dog eats grapes or raisins no matter how small the amount may be.

If you want to read more about dog food tips read here: Dog Food Tips and Tricks.

Can Dogs Eat Grapes? Grape Toxicosis and Dangers Explained (Watch Video)

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